Music Forum: IASPM Previews

Date(s) - 02/28/2014
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

The Music Dept. Lounge

! Official Room Location TBA !


Join us for a music forum that will include two paper previews by GC students presenting at the upcoming International Association for the Study of Popular Music Conference! Information about the papers being previewed are as follows:

The Perceptual Flow of Metric (Re)evaluation in Radiohead’s “Bloom”
Michael Lupo
Since their inception in the mid-1980s, the English rock band Radiohead has continuously sought to evolve stylistically, adopting compositional techniques and sonic resources that lie at the margins of rock conventions. The King of Limbs(2011) reveals a new stylistic phase in Radiohead’s becoming, as the album accumulates a series of grooves characterized by looping and layering pre-recorded acoustic samples and digitally created rhythmic cycles. Previous studies on Radiohead’s recent output have convincingly revealed how metric ambiguities evoke multifaceted modes of engagement amongst fan communities. However, this research rarely investigates the effects of timbre on rhythmic phenomena or what may encourage listeners to entrain to specific rhythmic streams and metric subdivisions as a given song proceeds over time.

This paper aims to address these issues by presenting a close reading of “Bloom,” the opening track on The King of Limbs. The perceptual flow between duple and triple divisions of the beat in “Bloom” affords listeners a multiplicity of possible metric (re)evaluations. This audible process of perceptual rhythmic undulation is evoked by the song’s lyrical imagery of water. Drawing on Christopher F. Hasty’s theory of projection, I provide an analysis of rhythmic cycles at the local level. Further, I interpret gestural signs provided by the band during a filmed performance, focusing particularly on their embodiment of metric options. By addressing both the audio and visual domains, this paper seeks not only to reveal essential characteristics of the band’s late style, but also to consider how metric interpretation is affected by timbral construction as the listener-viewer perceptually flows between attentional options.

Latino Punk Subjectivity in the US
David Pearson

After its initial explosion in the late 1970s, punk in the US became a largely white suburban phenomenon, albeit one with a professed attitude of rebellion towards suburban culture.  While there were of course exceptions to this fact, none amounted to a demographic shift in the punk scene.  This state of affairs was radically altered beginning in the 1990s, when a small number of Latino punk bands decided to sing in Spanish, hold concerts in Latino neighborhoods, and assert themselves within the largely white punk scene.  The 1990s wave of Latino punk bands ushered in a subsequent change in the demographics of the US underground punk scene: Mexican and Latino youth have become a coherent and sizable presence as performers and audience throughout the country.

By examining the 1990s explosion of US Latino punk spearheaded by the band Los Crudos, the present-day NYC punk scene, and transnational connections with punk in Mexico, this paper will explore how global flows of people and musical style have changed the face of punk in the US.  A nuanced understanding of Mexican migration, including limited upward mobility and deep stratification as well as increasing geographic dispersal, will provide a demographic backdrop.  Latino punk subjectivity will be examined as the construction of a new identity which consciously chooses how to engage the rebellious content and musical style of punk gone global and the volatile experience of migration to the US.




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